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tv   Starting Point  CNN  March 6, 2012 7:00am-9:00am EST

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stations from now yanking his show all together. those are our starting points for march 6th, 2012. here's the show. ♪ >> that was rolando laserie. the guy who drove me in to work this morning said, i have a new song for you. he's cuban, you can tell. good morning. let's get right to our panelist this morning. brett oh d'donnell is back, we welcome you. nice to see you again. a fellow at the institute of politics at harvard's kennedy school of government. and steve moore is with us for the first time. economics writer for the "wall street journal" editorial page. thank you for being with us. our "starting point" is super tuesday, of course. ten states will go to the polls today. there are 419 delegates up for grabs and potentially 2
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presidential campaign on the line. if you look at the map of today's super tuesday, contest, newt gingrich says he's going to win dpnlg and polls are supporting him on that. rick santorum says he's going to do well in tennessee and oklahoma and the polls are supporting him in that. mitt romney says he's going to win massachusetts and vermont and idaho and the polls support him on that and he plans to win virginia, partly because he's the only person on the ballot along with ron paul. so that's probably a pretty good guess. he's leading by a lot of the poll there's. what he's focused on now is the battleground state of ohio. there it is a dead heat between mitt romney and rick santorum. now, mitt romney says he believes he will win the republican nomination if, in fact, he can carry the state of ohio. but newt gingrich and rick santorum say, making mitt romney the nominee would be a big mistake. listen. >> he will be the weakest candidate we could possibly put forward on the most important issue of today. >> he can't close the deal. he can't close the deal in part
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because people inherently don't trust what he's saying and think that he isn't always very candid with him and sometimes frankly isn't straight. >> all right. no shocker there to see rick santorum and newt gingrich saying he would be a terrible nominee. republican congressman jason chaffetz of utah is a romney supporter. nice to see, you sir. we appreciate it, as always. >> good morning. >> mitt romney has said, i hope i get the support of the people in ohio. and i believe if i get the support of the people of ohio e., i win, i can get the norm nation. do you think that's right? >> it certainly would move him in the right direction. you're mitt romney you won't place places are anybody. i think the governor has always understood this is a national campaign and he's done exceptionally well. take all santorum, all the gingrich support and delegates that they have and you add them together and you still don't come close to mitt romney. i think if people focus on jobs and they want more jobs, they
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want less debt and want smaller government. if that's your main objective then you're going to support mitt romney today. >> so if he wins ohio, regardless of what happens in the nine other states, you believe he becomes a nominee? >> i think he's going to become the nominee even if it goes one direction or the other by a few thousand votes. i just think the party is starting to understand it needs to coalesce behind somebody that what does unite us is beating barack obama and that mitt romney has behy far the best chance of beating barack obama in november. >> why do you think that coalescing has just started? it sounds to be one of the new, you know, conversation of the week, is we're coalescing, we're coalescing. why is that? >> well, because you need to get up and down the ballot from coast to coast. people united. you've got to raise money. you've got to build an organization. and certainly myitt romney has shown he's got to do that. it wasn't until june that barack obama and hillary clinton were duking it out and then they did
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come together and get united. the sooner we do that the better off that we get. i think that's partly what you're going the to see because everywhere from alaska to v vermont you've got people voting. >> unfavorable numbers never went far down, 70% for barack obama and hillary clinton, even in june. if you look at the unfavorables for the front run, mitt romney, his numbers are, you know, 39% favorable -- unfavorable. isn't that sort of a oranges and apples on this one? >> yeah, we all tend to pick certain numbers that we like to make them convenient. i think certainly though there has been a steady drum beat when you look at barack obama versus mitt romney that mitt romney is in the best position to beat the president. we probably look at those numbers too much on a day to day basis. i think again once you get through this process republicans will not unite because what drives us more than anything is beating barack obama. >> it's my experience that politicians love the polls if
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they work in their favor. >> exactly. >> and not at all if they don't work in their favor. yesterday when i was talking to eric cantor, of course, i was trying to get some insight from him on whether he thinks that the coalescing is because they've now are supporting the true conservative and that true conservative is mitt romney. here's what he told me. >> i'm curious to know if you're also saying that by your support it's really mitt romney who is the true conservative here. >> mitt romney, again, soledad, not to be repetitious, but he's got a plan. >> the true conservative in your mind is mitt romney? >> soledad, what i believe is this election is about how we're going to make our country have a much brighter economic future. >> i'm just going to note that you are not going to answer that question for me but i'm happy to move on. >> which he never actually answered that question. so i'll ask you that question. is this support now, i mean, you get, what were you telling me the other day, you're like 99%
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highest rating in -- >> second highest -- second most conservative person in the house. >> way up there. >> yeah. >> do you think that mitt romney is the true conservative in this race? yes or no. >> absolutely. absolutely. i totally absolutely believe that. look, if we put as our nominee a washington, d.c. insider, someone who has based their career on being a washington, d.c. insider and worked as a lobbyist on k street, do you think that's the winning formula? no, but that's where rick santorum and newt gingrich are. you want somebody from the outside who has had success in the business community and the olympics, who governed a state as a conservative, in massachusetts, who issued 800 vetoes. i could go on and on and on. >> please don't. got it. >> absolutely, i believe that. >> all right. great. you have a question? >> yeah, absolutely. reft ti representative chaffetz, do you think that proportionality elongated the race and in retrospect do you think that's been a good or bad thing for the republican party?
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>> probably too early to tell but it has elongated the race because when you have a winner take all such in florida where mitt romney dominated, you are ready to move on. parsing it up that's certainly going to stretch it out. even if you kind of ran the table, you could never lock up the nomination until april. so i think the media is very quickly trying to say, oh, it's taking time and, look, you can't physically get to the number of delegates that you need until april. and so let's also remember that john mccain lost 20 states on the way to becoming the nominee. but, look, if you're mitt romney you wouldn't trade places with anybody at this point. >> congressman, you know, not support him. i have heard this from voters who just don't belief that he is their choice. often conservatives, evangelical white christians. is there going to be a messaging that can triangulate between the swing voters that need to move
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over in the general election and the core voters? >> how do you get everybody under the same tent, i guess would be the question. >> exactly. >> again, when the focus is defeating barack obama or having him for another four years, if it's about jobs, if it's about the economy, if it's about how do we make government smaller? then i think mitt romney would do xenexceptionally well. he is able to attract the independents that will probably truly decide the election in november, mitt romney does exceptionally well in drawing them together. as a conservative, i think he's tea party safe, the right guy for the job, i think he's uniquely qualified. that's why you can tell i'm just a little bitten thus a enthusia his candidacy. >> usually we come in with his music, which was devo the last time. >> she spared everybody this time. >> no, good taste usually. i mocked you on my blog a little bit about that. >> i know i don't have good taste. >> we'll give you another chance next time. >> okay.
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>> thank you, sir. other stories making headlines. christine romans has those for us. good morning. >> good morning. that teen who admitted to the deadly school shooting in ohio will appear in juvenile court today. t.j. lane is accused of killing three students and injuring two others. prosecutors are planning to use his case to adult court. they're also trying to block the release of more information about lane's past. officials have already revealed that when he was 15, lane was charged for the violent assault of an uncle. russian riot police violently breaking up thousands of protesters in moscow. about 20,000 demonstrators tried to take over the square yesterday. they're angry about vladimir putin's victory in the recent election. they're claiming wide spread fraud. about 250 people were detained. north korea conducting live fire military drills near an island in disputed waters where four south koreans were killed in 2010. and while those drills are taking place, the north is criticizing the u.s. and south
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korea for conducting their own joint military exercises. all this as u.s. and north korean envoys prepare to meet tomorrow in beijing. they will be talking about a deal that provides the north with food in exchange for all nuclear activities being suspended. israeli prime minister b benjamin netanyahu preparing to meet with leaders on capitol hill. he met yesterday with president obama. they are trying to reach an agreement on how to deal with iran and the nuclear program. netanyahu warning the u.s. and israel are running out of time. >> for the sake of our prosperity, for the sake of our security, for the sake of our children, iran must not be allowed to acquire nuclear weapons. >> mitt romney also weighing in. the republican presidential candidate has an op-ed piece in the "washington post" today. he write, while obama frets in the white house, the iranians are making rapid progress toward
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obtaining the most destructive weapons in the history of the world. it's been another night of violence across syria. reports of explosions and gunfire is rocking the capital city of damascus. the massacre of civilians prompting senator john mccain to urge the u.s. to lead an international effort to carry out air strikes on syrian forces. >> if we want to stand by and watch syrians being massacred in the most brutal and incredibly genocidal fashion, then that is a decision we can make. but please don't tell me we can't do it. we can if we have the will. >> mccain is also calling on the obama administration to begin arming syria's opposition forces. the white house disagrees. a last minute change of venue for the upcoming g-8 economic summit here in the u.s. it was supposed to take place in chicago on may 209 and 21st. but president obama will host those world leaders at camp david instead. the white house says security and likely protests were not
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factors in this decision. officials say the maryland retreat setting is going to allow for more intimate discussions. the nato summit will remain in chicago. and paula dean's culinary empire under fire. a lawsuit adccuses dean and her brother of sexual harassment and making racist comments. the suit was filed yesterday in georgia from former manager lisa jackson. uncle bubba's in savannah, georgia. jackson claims dean's brother bub bra ba brought porn to work. the suit alleges bubba asked jackson to bring pictures of herself to work, telling her she has nice legs. that's just the stuff that we can tell you about, soledad. >> i was going to say, wow, that even kind of goes for the you think you might want to go first thing in the morning. christine, we will be watching that. still ahead this morning on "starting point," president obama is not going to let the gop grab all the headlines today. the white house announcing he's
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going to hold his first formal news conference of the year today, on super tuesday. hmm. we're going to talk to the dnc chairwoman debbie waser man shultz about the timing of that. interesting. also, does the constitution po protect homegrown terrorists? attorney general holder is going to talk about when it is okay to target americans overseas. and our "get real" this morning, a guy who is a movie buff wanted to have snacks at the concession stand. now has a lawsuit because he thinks concession stand snacks are extortion. truly. you're watching "starting point." we'll dig into that right after this. i'm robert shapiro. over a million people have discovered how easy it is to use legalzoom for important legal documents. so start your business, protect your family, launch your dreams. at legalzoom.com, we put the law on your side.
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♪ welcome back, everybody. that's stephen moore's play
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list, "sherry darling." nice photo. you can send us your picture. nothing cracrazy, people. send it to us on twitter. if it's crazy i'm not going to put it on tv. i should mention we have our new blog starting today as well that i wrote this morning because in all the free time i have, why not also do a blog, right? >> yes. >> let's move off of our talk about super tuesday this morning. the white house wants you to forget all about it. in fact, what they would like you to do is focus at 1:15 p.m. eastern time on the president's first solo full length news conference, first one since october. is it strategic timing or a coincidence? dnc chair monday debbie wasserman schultz is joining us this morning. nice to have you. >> thanks. >> let's talk timing. hmmm, super tuesday, or a big long press conference starting at 1:15 eastern time. it's not coincidence, right? >> no, it's not coincidence.
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i mean, i think we have got a lot of really important issues going on in the country right now. president obama just hosted prime minister netanyahu in the white house yesterday. there are so many different things going on in terms of jobs and the economy and the discussion of where we need to go with this country. and moving our economy forward. so this is a perfect day to -- for the president to hold a news conference. >> that's not what i meant. isn't it a perfect day because it's a busy news cycle, it's a perfect day because everybody should be talking about the gop nomine nominees. that's intentional, right? >> the world doesn't come to an end just because it's super tuesday for the republicans. i mean, we do have a president of the united states, barack obama, who is singularly focused on continuing to get this economy turned around and making sure that he's able to communicate his efforts and his policies to the country. and that's what this news conference will be all about. >> so then that's yes, we're
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going to make sure to steal some of the fire from all the conversations about super tuesday and insert the president into that conversation, that's how i read that, am i right, before i move on? i'm having a hard time getting people to answer my questions this week. >> no, i'm answering your question straight up. the world does not come to an end or screeching halt because the republicans have a primary. while they seem singularly focused on out right winging each other, president obama has been been focused on trying to make sure we can continue to create jobs, fight for the middle class and working families. by the way, yesterday, he hosted the prime minister of israel at the white house. he's continuing to do his job and that's the job that the american people elected him to do and sod is a good day to make sure that he can check in with the american people and give everyone an update on where we've been and the progress that we've made and the direction that he'd like to see this country go. >> let's talk about these conversations with the israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu. they spoke yesterday. they have both given speeches at apac.
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let me play you a little clip of what benjamin netanyahu had to say. >> i appreciate president obama's recent efforts to impose even tougher sanctions against iran. and these sanctions are hurting iran's economy. but unfortunately iran's nuclear program continues to march forward. my friends, israel has waited, patiently waited, for the international community to resolve this issue. we've waited for diplomacy to work. we've waited for sanctions to work. none of us can afford to wait much longer. >> mitt romney had an op-ed in the "washington post" this morning. he says, he will take, if he were president. i will take every measure necessary to check the evil regime of the ayatollahs. i will buttress my diplomacy with the option that will persuade the ayatollahs to
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abandon their nuclear ambitions, even when they understand that it at the end of the that road lies not nuclear weapons but ruin will there be a real chance for peaceful resolution. what role is going this going to play in the re-election? >> on sunday, president obama's speech he made it very clear to the 14,000 apac activists that he is singularly focused on -- in terms of iran policy -- on making sure they do not attain their goal of achieving a nuclear weapon and that he is using every tool at his disposal and leaves no option off the table. and so the difference between president obama's policy and mitt romney and what he said in his editorial this morning is exactly none except for the bellacoast language and telegraph that mitt romney is doing and characterization that president obama laid out in his speech to apac which is that you
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should speak softly and carry a big stick. and you know, when it comes to strategy, when it comes to making sure that we can actually achieve our goals, president obama's focus on making sure that the iranian regime understands that we are deadly serious and that he has consistently backed up his words with actions. we have only to look to the demise of osama bin laden to see that or to the demise of gadhafi and libya to see that. but we need to make sure that the time and space that has been created by those economic sanctions is utilized to its fullest extent and that at the end of the day, military option is necessary, that option remains on the table. so the prime minister and president obama are on the same page. and let me just also add, soledad, that president obama also emphasized that -- in his speech, that israel is a sovereign nation and has the ability and the responsibility to make sure that they make
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decisions about options that they would pursue on their own. >> okay. that was a long answer and i don't want to run out of time. >> it's a tough issue. >> i agree on that. here's a question for you before i let you go. i want to talk about the treatment of women in politics. you're a woman in politics. a mom in politics. michele bachmann was talking to tiers morgan last night. she says for sometimes people on the right it feels like they get all upset when it's somebody on the left is who is attacked and you don't get that same sense of outraged when she was being attacked. do you agree with that? >> it's not okay to attack anyone, but it's not okay to use the language that rush limbaugh or that any prominent figure would use that is derogatory towards women. but rush limbaugh really crossed the line when he went after a young law student who is not a public figure, who simply took a stand and she did not deserve the treatment that she got from rush limbaugh. he called her a slut. he said if she wanted
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contraception, that in exchange, she should post sex tapes on video. i mean, this is outrageous talk. and it's not talk that's humorous or appropriate. and as a mom of two daughters, and as a public official, that conduct and that xhnt tecomment should be called out. >> debbie wasserman schultz, thank you. president obama's news conference held on super tuesday is going to be at 1:15 eastern time right here on cnn and cnn.com. we're going to carry that live. that's cnn.com/live. i want to talk to you more about women, especially michele bachmann's campaign that you were involved in and maybe a little bill maher. sometimes it's outrageous on both sides. that will be ahead. ahead on "starting point," gitmo detaineeses released to fight another day. disturbing new report that shows an increase of how many return to what they're doing. also, "get real," price of popcorn too high?
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sue the movie theater. this is crazy. our "starting point" play list comes from brett o'donnell. look at you, billy joel, "longest time." ♪ ♪ one, two, three, four ♪ you say ♪ flip it over and replay ♪ we'll make everything okay ♪ walk together the right way ♪ do, do, do, do the passat is one of nine volkswagen models named a 2012 iihs top safety pick. not that we'd ever brag about it. [ chuckles ] turn right. come on -- nine. turn left. hit the brakes. huh. how'd that get there?
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welcome back. our get real this morning, it's so crazy. i guess everybody has their moment when they're done. for joshua thompson, movie fanatic, he was just done when his coca-cola and box of popcorn cost him $8. he's filed a class action lawsuit against his local amc theater in michigan because he says they are charging grossly
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excessive prices at the concession stand. he says, the prices of snacks are three times as high as they are down the block in the drugstore. the suit accuses amc theaters of violating the michigan consumer protection act. amc will not comment. so here's my question. why, why not just go to the drugstore, stuff your bag full of candy that's cheap, which is what we used to do, by the way, as a family. >> or buy the dvd. popcorn at home. >> because men don't have purses. if he had a purse, it would all be worked out. >> stuff that candy bar in your pocket. >> there's no substitute for movie popcorn. i'm wailling to pay for it. if it gets too expensive, don't go. >> i'm surprised you're on that side. i think it's a frivolous lawsuit. >> i support a constitutional amendment for free popcorn. still ahead this morning on "starting point," television evangelist pat robertson is
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known for his controversial comments. he says them a lot and often. he says people could have prayed away the deadly tornadoes in the midwest. and sarah palin says she thinks congressman allan west could be our next vp. we're going to talk to the congressman about that. see if he will accept or not. first, though, from congressman west's play list, a little pink floyd, "comfortably numb."
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♪ what are we listening to? who is this? oh, is this yours? this is rihanna. i like this. >> yep. >> you know what, what are we looking at? oh, this is voting. this is -- i can't see that far away. we're looking at -- they've moved -- people, they've moved the prompter a little bit. it's strothers, ohio.
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it's where the polls have opened. thank you for the support. it's early. it's early. it's early, mr. moore. relax. we're going to get right to headline. lo look, my panel is going crazy already. hey, christine. >> hi, soledad. no let-up to the slaughter of civilians in syria. we're getting reports of done fire and explosions overnight in the capital city of damascus. gopt troops widening their attacks throughout the country. senator john mccain is calling for the u.s. to lead international air strikes against the syrian regime while arming syria's opposition forces. the white house opposes that idea. and nearly two weeks after she was killed by a rocket attack in homs, the body of american journalist marie colvin is expected to arrive in the u.s. today. a funeral mass is planned for monday in new york. the bodies of colvin and french photographer remi were formally identified by french and polish diplomats in damascus before
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being flown to san francisfranc weekend. a growing number of detai e detainees released from guantanamo bay have resumed terrorist activity. that report from the director of national intelligence shows nearly 28% of gitmo detainees who were transferred to other countries as of the end of last year, 28% are either confirmed or suspected of returning to the battlefield to fight western interests. attorney general eric holder answering for the targeted killing of an american accuse of terrorism. holder says u.s. citizens can legally be targeted in a foreign country if they're involved in high-level terrorism and they pose an immediate threat of deadly violence to americans. >> if the nation were to have terrorists act, where they tend to hide, it may not always be feasible to capture united states citizen terrorists who presents an imminent threat of violent attack. in that case, our government has the clear authority to defend
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the united states with lethal force. >> american-born anwar al halliki was killed last year. pat robertson offering up interesting views of last week's devastating tornados in america's heartland. listen to what he said on "the 700 club." god doesn't send tornados to hurt people. we call them acts of god, but they're not. so all i can say is that why do you build houses in a place are tornadoes are apt to happen. >> why did godsend them but why didn't he intervene? >> robertson is well-known for making controversial remarks. in 2010 he blamed the earthquake in haiti on that country's, quote, packed with devil. he also suggested hillary clinton -- hurricane katrina was god's way of punishing americans. the u.s. market opens in two hours. stock futures are lowing right now suggesting that stock
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markets could open later today at 9:30 eastern. dow futures are down. its concerns about growth in china and europe pushing stocks lower here and over seas this morning. a new study says video games change your brain and that may be a good thing. researchers say video games can improve creativity, decision making, and the ability to multi-task. the study found people who play action-based games make decisions 25% faster than others without sacrificing accuracy. and regular gamers can pay attention to more than six things at once without getting confused. wow. >> that video was so hilarious watching people playing the wii. >> paid for that study. >> yeah. apparently not. it was an independent study. that's what they said in the report. thank you very much. of course, today is the day that could change the shape of gop presidential race. ten states are voting today. they're going to be deciding on 419 delegates. a dead heat in what is the big prize, the state of ohio.
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mitt romney and santorum are tied there. two big congressional endorsements came to mitt romney on sunday. eric cantor and oklahoma senator tom colburn both endorsed them. whether that will give them a boost remains to be seen. one man who is saying mum though is congressman west of florida. thanks for being with us. as always, we appreciate it. >> thank you very much. >> usually i say to you, who are you going to endorse today. my question, is why not endorse? it's late in the game. is it just you're just not going to endorse? >> well, once again, as i have talked to you about, soledad, i think that most important thing for me to focus on is my duties up here as a congressional representative and i don't see any endorsement of mine being that important in this race. i think it's most important for the american people out there to decide in this primary, not worry about my endorsement. >> as i mentioned, congressman cantor, senator colburn have both now endorsed mitt romney. those are two tea party
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favorites. you know, with strong conservative credentials, obviously. my question is, does that mean that mitt romney is now considered to be the true conservative in this race, would you say? >> well, i'm not going to get into labeling. i think that what you see is certain individuals that are definitely influential within the gop, aligning themselves so that we can move toward having an eventual nominee. i think that's the whole point of it. and of course, you know, up here in virginia you're only going to have two individuals in that race. and then i guess senator colburn sees mitt romney being the best person to move forward and that's why he offered his endorsement ahead of the oklahoma primary. >> most of the debate over the last couple of weeks is focused on social issues. if you look at senator santorum, talking about gay marriage, contraception, separation of church and state. do you think -- you know that correlates with a decline in the polls. do you think that that was a mistake for him? >> well, i think you need to understand what are the most pressing issues for the american
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people right now. and i think maybe he did make a mistake in going down the wrong rabbit hole. you've got to continue to talk about the deficit situation. you've got to continue to talk about the right type of tax and regulatory policies that will create the conditions for job growth in the united states of america. as i sat there and listened to a prime minister netanyahu last night in apac you cannot forget our national security as well. >> so the only thing i would add to that though, and i do agree with you that the media can lead you down the rabbit hole. over the weekend he could start off saying, basically, i've been led down the rabbit hole and then gave a speech about social issues. mr. moore had a question for you. >> stephen moore here. great to see you. just a question of obviously ohio is the battleground state. by your state is probably the biggest prize of all in november. and you know the scuttlebutt in washington is that no mat whole the nominee is, that the best vice presidential nominee would
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be your state -- senator from the state of florida, marco rub rubio. why do you think whether you put santorum or romney or gingrich, if they put somebody like marco rubio on that ticket, do you think that would help the deliver the key state of florida? republicans can't win if they can't win the state of florida? >> yeah, i think there would be a blood selection. senator yub yrubio was the speaf the house there. he has a great story. he is well known across that state. he is someone who brings a new and vibrant energy to the gop and also to the race. i think he has a great vision for this country as well. >> sarah palin says it should be you. here's what she said. >> you know who i would like to see considered for the vp slot is colonel allen west. in this very testimoime in our intimate knowledge of the way the military works and should work by perhaps having a close family member serve, someone
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like that, like colonel allen west. >> she supports it. what do you say? what say you, sir? >> you know, you guys, that was a pretty good set-up. >>s thatn't even -- i met mr. moore about 48 minutes ago. before he said -- >> yes, you ambushed. i'm in military. i can recognize an ambush any day. >> i was going to ask you that question. i had noeyed what he was going to ask you. here is a set-up and an ambush. this is you singing, sir. >> oh, my gosh. >> yeah. >> let's see if he can sing. ♪ we need to hear if he has a good voice. hang on. where is the singing? wait for it. wait for it. ♪ ♪ pretty woman walking down the street ♪ ♪ pretty woman the kind i'd like
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to meet ♪ >> okay, he can sing. >> perhaps he should run for president. he can rival president obama's singing. you're not so bad. >> this is good early morning comic relief for you guys, huh? >> no. >> as far as the vice president thing, you know, who knows what the future lies because it wasn't too long ago, you know, i was sitting in the desert of kandahar, afghanistan, and now i'm here talking with you. but, you know, i am always willing and ready to serve my country in whatever capacity the american people would desire. >> duly noted, sir. we hope you will keep talking to us and join us. >> always. >> when you're vcht as well. >> and singing. >> and keep singing. you're pretty good. we like that. >> thank you. >> appreciate it. >> pleasure. still ahead on "starting point," we're going to talk to sam lahood, he is the son of transportation secretary ray lahood. he's just been released from being held in egypt and he is talking to us in his very first television interview. the dark signal he says that
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this sends for the democracy in egypt. we'll discuss that. and is it too early to write off rush? he's lost so far 13 sponsors, 2 stations, and counting. but he still has his biggest ally on his side, clear channel. we'll discuss that straight ahead. stay with us. ♪ ( whirring and crackling sounds ) man: assembly lines that fix themselves. the most innovative companies are doing things they never could before, by building on the cisco intelligent network.
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a high profile standoff is threatening to derail u.s./egypt relations. sam lahood, the son of transportation secretary ray lahood, was detained in egypt until late last week. these are images of six of them on their flight home. millions of dollars were paid in bail for freedom. sam lahood is joining us now for his first television interview. back in december 29th your offices were raided. by january 21st when you were headed to the airport you discovered that you couldn't go. you had a ban on leaving the country. and finally that travel ban was lifted and you and six other americanss were able to leave
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the country on wednesday. bail, i understand, was roughly $300,000 per person. so start me first and foremost how does it feel to be back in the united states? >> well, i'm thrilled on the home and reunited with my family and my wife. i'm excited just to be able to reconnect with people who sent me e-mails and were praying for all of us and looking forward to our release. and my wife is excited that we're going to finally get to have our honeymoon. i was married in september. we weren't able to actually have a honeymoon so i'm looking forward to that. we're also just were concerned about our egyptian colleagues who remain on trial in egypt and we're hopeful that this can all be resolved for them, as well. >> we will get to them in a moment, but first, i want to ask you about the circumstances. no one really used the word hostage when you were banned from leaving the country. but were you held hostage? is that fair to say? >> that's the analogy that our attorney used. i mean, he felt like to some degree it was -- he equated it to a hostage situation. we were prevented from leaving the country.
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it was a de facto detention in the sense that we were prevented from being able to leave the country of egypt. >> talk to me about the official charges. some of them include operating non-governmental organizations without a license, receiving millions of dollars in elicit foreign funding, they said, also, you were accused of promoting unrest. so tell me a little bit about your -- the institute, the international republican institute, and what does it do and what do you think of those charges? >> sure. i mean, the international republican institute, we work in more than 60 countries around the world. we work to advance democracy at large. we do that by working to provide technical assistance to institutions that support democratic transitions and democratic bodies within a country. and so we work with political parties on very taechnical issues. and on election issues,
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election-real estated issues. the charges, as you mentioned, i was accused of two things, which was managing an uj registered ngo and bringing money into the country illegally. those charges are different than some of the allegations that were made against us about trying to sew unrest in egypt and more serious things that have been alleged by former elements of the mubarak regime. but the two charges are serious charges. they're the same charges that me and all my colleagues face. it's basically related to not being registered within egypt as an official ngo. >> what happens now to yourself and your colleagues who are still in egypt? do you go back to egypt to face the charges? you've paid bail. >> sure. we're working with our lawyers to try to figure out what's next for myself and my other american colleagues. as we said, we're hopeful that this issue is going to be resolved within egypt and there will be a positive outcome for our egyptian colleagues as well. the trial is expected to go on
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for some time. we're hopeful for a positive resolution or that the case will be dismissed. >> in the big picture what does it mean about post mubarak egypt. what does this say, do you think? >> that's a little bit above my pay grade. from our experience in working in places like egypt, they're going through a transition like this, oftentimes these transitions are uneven. there's bumps in the road. in our case what we're seeing here is, as i said, former elements of the mubarak government that are pushing their own agenda that we think is inconsistent with the transition that's going on in egypt right now, the democratic transition that's going on. >> we'll watch the case. obviously you'll be watching that as well. thank you for talking with us. that's sam lahood who's the director of the international represent milk egypt program. glad to see you back safe. >> thanks a lot. >> still ahead this morning be on "starting point," rush limbaugh backlash. are his controversial comments about women a wake-up call for how women on both sides of the political aisle are addressed? we'll discuss that straight ahead on "starting point."
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idea sended i descended to their level when i used those words to describe sandra fluke. that was my error. i became like them. i sincerely apologize to ms. fluke for using those words to describe her. >> the them is the left really is what he's saying. he's apologizing for a second time. that was on his show yesterday and points out that it was really the left's fault after he called sandra fluke, the georgetown law student a slut and some other words that were not very nice. 12 companies pulled their ads. two radio stations have stopped airing their program. no surprise the backlash. you worked a lot, very closely with michele bachmann. she was on piers morgan last night. she said human cry when it's an attack on the left but on the right when she was attacked she didn't feel the same sense of outrage. here's what she said. >> if you're a conservative
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woman it seems like there is no level of vitreal that's beyond the pale. we know governor palin's been on the receiving end of it. you don't see this level of outrage. you certainly don't see advertisers coming back. >> think that's true? >> i do think that's true. i remember during the campaign, i believe it was in july, bill mauer used some pretty strong language against michelle. it's language i can't even use on the air. >> no, you really couldn't. >> and, you know, he didn't get suspended. he didn't really get chastised by the left or any of the media. >> there wasn't really a lot of outrage at all i think about it. >> no. no. so i do think that sometimes that happens. >> why is that? >> well, i think that there are a number of reasons. i do think that rich limbaugh, first of all, he's been saying incendiary things for years. bill mauer, full disclosure, i've been on his show many times, i think you saw during the politically incorrect era he
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was on abc, he moved to hboe that's a paid channel. rich limbaugh has through clear channel in particular the air waves to any number of people driving around in their cars with their kids any day and i think that really this is a money issue. what's happening is people are making a judgment based on rush limbaugh's audience as to what he can and cannot say to a broad advertiser base. i certainly don't endorse anybody slandering anyone else, but i think that there's also a question of in what context was rush limbaugh speaking and what he said was unconscionable. >> i can guarantee you this is not the end of rush limbaugh. arguably, i've been friends with rush for 20 years, say that in full disclosure, he is in my opinion still the most conservative voice in america. he has six to 8 million listeners every day. you mentioned that some of the -- by the way, i'm not in any way excusing his behavior because i've told rush i thought it was out of bounds, but i do think that his show will continue to be extremely
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popular. in terms of the advertisers, he'll have no problem getting more. >> replacing them. >> i agree with you on that one. we have to take a short break. still ahead on "starting point," in our second hour voting is now underway. it's super tuesday, of course. mitt romney's hoping to lock up the nomination. a key supporters of his, aaron shock is going to join us. he says romney is the man to beat in his eyes. plus the former first lady, barbara bush, says the gop race is the worst campaign ever. we'll talk about her harsh critique and what's behind that straight ahead. stay with us. you're watching "starting point." we're back in a moment. [ beep ] [ mom ] scooter?
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welcome, everybody. it's super tuesday. that, of course, is the biggest payout of primary season. there are ten states in play. a total of 419 delegates. mitt romney and rick santorum are neck in neck in the state of ohio. newt gingrich is banking on a big win in georgia and ron paul is hoping to play the spoiler in whatever way he can. we'll find out why he's laughing.
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the leader of israel is on capitol hill. he could get some stronger support for an attack on iran than he did from president obama. we'll talk to benjamin netanyahu's former chief of staff this morning who says israel is not able to outsource its fate to the united states. then paying for pain. an nfl scandal is now unraveling. bounties for hits for some big time players like brett favre. those are our starting points those are our starting points for march 6th, 2012. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com ♪ >> journey. carl. >> this is one of my favorite songs. i love that song. >> steve perry was the lead singer of journey. i like a little journey in the morning. i might start my morning with that tomorrow. welcome back, everybody. that's your play list this morning. brett, of course, brett o'donnell is the advisor to mitt romney and michele bachmann's campaigns and also in their,
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what's the word i'm searching for? the debates. it's early. you've obviously coached their debates. i'm having a hard time early this morning. steven moore joins us as well. he's a senior economics writer. faraid is with us. she's at harvard's kennedy school of government. it's nice to have you all as we get going. our "starting point," of course, is today is super tuesday. biggest single day of the republican presidential campaign. underway right now on the east coast. it's voters, ten states, casting their ballots. you're looking at live pictures from a polling place in struthers, ohio, where nobody is there yet. >> ten voters. >> it's the enthusiasm. >> it's early yet, as i said, as i stumbled over words. heavy turnout in ohio. not yet, but it's early. as i mentioned, 419 is kind of the number to watch here. both newt gingrich and rick santorum have been upping the ante, of course, on their
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attacks against the front-runner, mitt romney. no surprise. listen. >> he will be the weakest candidate we could possibly put forward on the most important issue of today. >> he can't close the deal and he can't close the deal in part because people inherently don't trust what he's saying and think that he isn't always very candid and sometimes, frankly, isn't straight. >> republican congressman aaron shock of the state of illinois joins our panel this morning. he's also a romney supporter. thank you for talking with us. we appreciate your time this morning. we all know ohio is a must win. what about the other nine states. mitt romney has said i believe if i win ohio i'm going to be the nominee. do you think that's true? >> i think it's true and i think regardless he's going to win a majority of the states tonight. everyone expects this to have been wrapped up by now. the fact of the matter is statistically he couldn't have wrapped it up by now. there's no candidate with more delegates than mitt romney. there's no candidate with more support around the country than
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mitt romney. i think he has the momentum to ultimately close the deal and be the nominee. >> is the momentum undermined if rick santorum who's leading by 18 voits in tennessee and leading in oklahoma has big wins? tennessee has the second highest number of delegates. >> rick santorum has proven to do well among some of the more conservative members of our primary voters, but at the end of the day mitt romney has held his own among republican conservative voters but he's also proven to be the strongest for independent and swing voters that will ultimately decide the election in november. i had to chuckle when i heard your play in there of newt gingrich and rick santorum criticizing mitt romney. the fact of the matter is the polls show he is the strongest candidate for our party to nominate in the general election. so i think the republican primary voters get it. it's why they have chosen him time and time again in all of these primary states. why he has more delegates. >> so you think that's what's responsible for the coalescing
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as opposed to last week it was a big debate over who was the true conservative. now it was we need a nominee and we'll coalesce or is it mitt romney is the true conservative? what is it? >> it's all relative. i mean, compared to barack obama, all of the candidates in the race are true conservatives. a year ago mitt romney was the conservative alternative to john mccain. many of the same people who are claiming he's not conservative enough were backing mitt romney last time because they thought he was more conservative than john mccain. at the end of the day what my voters in central illinois are concerned about is the economy. it's the unemployment but it's the growing cost of living in america, whether it's the gas prices, whether it's the food prices, whether it's the health care costs that continue to skyrocket despite the passage of the health care bill. these are the things americans are concerned about, and mitt romney laying out his very comprehensive tax reform proposal, his background in job
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creation, those are the things that i think compel republican primary voters and independent voters to say we've tried the obama policies. they haven't really turned this around. obama's words said if we don't have this turned around in three years, it will be a one hp term proposition. that's why americans are saying it's time for someone new. i think mitt romney is the strongest guy to lead and succeed president obama. >> first lady barbara bush, former first lady, was on wfaa in texas. she said this is the worst chunk ever. >> it's been i think the worst campaign i've ever seen in my life. i just hate it. i hate the fact that people think compromise is a dirty word. >> i always love that she never really minced words when she was in the white house. do you think that's true, that it's just really spun out of control and this is the nastiest ever? >> well, look, i love barbara bush. i would say that, you know, the primary that george herbert
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walker bush had in the republican primary was pretty nasty. there have been tough battles before. president george herbert walker bush, his primary with ronald regan was tough in the '80s. i do believe at the end of this election people will be looking back after november and saying this was one of the nastiest general elections they've ever seen. part of that is because i'm from the president's home state and i know that the president's record is not a positive one that he can run on and having followed david axlerod and robert gibbs and the chicago machine, if you will, this is bear knuckle politics. chicago machine politics is pretty nasty and if these are the guys that can get rob blagojevich re-elected, i have no question in my mind what kind of presidential campaign will be run. it will be the politics of persons of destruction and they will be going after whoever our nominee is with all the negative ads that money can buy, that a billion dollars can buy.
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>> hold on. let me stop you. i want to ask steven moore. you write this editorial page. do you think that's true? do you think when he points out is this the nastiest as the former first lady says? do you think it is going to be the nastiest? >> it's been nasty. the steaks are high. these races always get nasty. it's interesting, congressman, great to see you, by the way. as you know, i'm from the great state of illinois. i wanted to ask you, by the way, i agree with you entirely. if mitt romney wins this race i think it will be because he took our advice at the wall street editorial page and came up with that -- >> are you promoting? >> no. i think that tax plan that he came out with with the across the board tax cut i think it was really critical. i wanted to tell you something that kind of makes me angry. now i live in virginia and when i get back from new york today i'll vote in the virginia primary. what troubles me is neither rick santorum nor newt gingrich are on the ballot in that state. why is it that republicans are denying the candidates the
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ability to -- >> congressman shock answer that question. why is it, do you think? >> well, look, every state has its own rules. i can't speak for why virginia has the more onerous rules that they had, but at the end of the day, let's face it, each candidate that got in the presidential race knew what the rules of engagement were, knew what the rules for each state were. and newt gingrich made the calculation. rick santorum made the calculation that for whatever reason they were not going to get the signatures required. i'm not an expert on virginia law, but i understand you have to get a certain number in each congressional district. it's very onerous. it's up to virginia to change its rules. the virginia legislature, the republican central committee there to make those rules changes. i think everybody should be able to play if they play by the same rules and i think regardless mitt romney would be doing very well in virginia regardless of who's on the ballot. i certainly share your frustration. >> congressman aaron shock, it's nice to see you.
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steve moore's mad. he's mad this morning. nice to have you. >> there's not a lot of choices in virginia. >> the teen who admitted to the deadly school shooting in ohio will appear in juvenile court. t.j. lane is accused of killing three students and injuring three others. prosecutors plan to move his case to adult court. they're also trying to block the release of more information about lane's past. also today, funeral services are scheduled for one of lane's alleged victims. 16-year-old demetrius hewlin. israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu will meet with people today. he'll try to reach an agreement to deal with the problem. >> for the sake of our prosperity, for the sake of our security, for the sake of our children, iran must not be allowed to acquire nuclear
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weapons. mitt romney has an op ed out today in the washington post. he writes, while obama frets in the white house, the iranians are making rapid progress towards obtaining the most destructive weps pons in the world. >> naftali bennett will join us. former major leaguer len any dikes stra, the man they called nails has been sentenced to three years in a california state prison. he's pleaded no contest to grand theft auto and providing a false financial statement. a los angeles county judge rejected his request to withdraw his plea and fight the charges. gas prices dropping for the first time in three months. it's $3.76. don't spend it all in one place. experts say gas prices will probably remain high and rise further throughout the spring and summer. tomorrow marks the 47th anniversary of the first selma
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to montgomery march for voting rights. a reenactment of this 54 mile march is going on right now. it led to the voting rights act of 1965. the marchers including reverend jesse jackson and reverend al sharpton. they're 11 miles in. this march targeting alabama's new voter i.d. law. critics say it's an assault on minority voting rights. >> also targeting alabama's new immigration law as well. still ahead this morning on "starting point," a mom, a true leer row. she lost both of her legs because she shielded her kids in the middle of these tornadoes when everything collapsed on top of her. they ended up being completely unscathed. we'll hear from her this morning. plus wouldn't yis for big hits on big players. the scandal now exploding in the nfl. first, the best political team on tv right here on cnn. special coverage will be here all night including a unique perspective.
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we'll explain what you'll see tonight. >> tonight we're going to do something we've never done before. we're going to watch the returns from right here, a virtual convention floor, to see what the super tuesday vote will mean to mitt romney, rick santorum, newt gingrich, and ron paul. we will be tracking the delegate count. how many people will actually show up here to support each of these candidates and whether the whole party is inching closer to a brutal, bruising, brokered convention. that's still considered a long shot, but unless one of the contenders can fill enough of these seats with his backers to make it clear that he is decisively the party's choice, real trouble could be brewing for the gop. a nasty floor fight, possible efforts to draft a last-minute compromise candidate, and some deep fractures that will have to be mended before they can even think about tackling the democrats. we'll be watching to see if that is where this party is headed
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minute by minute right here from our virtual convention tonight. . ♪ an old man shared some fish stories... ♪ oooh, my turn. ♪ she was in paris, but we talked for hours... everyone else buzzed about the band. there's a wireless mind inside all of us. so, where to next? ♪
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zbroo good morning. welcome back, everybody. the nfl bounty pool controversy is being called a huge scandal. there are 14 so far that have been implicated. the nfl is interviewing more coaches and players. according to one report nfl officials met with greg williams. he is the defensive coach for the new orleans saints. he is accused of running bounty pools for up to $50,000. people got paid out, players, if they made address sieve hits. some got as much as $1500 if they did a game ending hit. >> in buffalo we had a culture of relentlessness. we wanted a competitive edge over our opponents and, you know, we crossed the line. we went a little too far when we took pay for play to a level where it shouldn't have gone. >> former nfl safety reese played for williams when he was
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head coach of the buffalo bills from 2003 to 2004. thanks for talking with us. the pools exist. you took part as a player in those pools. describe for me how far it went. like specifically, what was the conversation around the pool. >> well, in terms of that, first off, playing in buffalo, just to stand corrected, coy's comments is we never had the coaches involved. greg williams was never involved. it was strictly with the players. my seven-year career, this is something that is just a culture of the sport of football. especially playing on defense. it was never to the point of trying to jeopardize a player's career or injure a player or player being carried off in a cart. big hits, interceptions, big plays causing a fumble was more what it was about as opposed to trying to physically injure a player. i've had several injuries myself and i would never go out to inflict that kind of pain or cause an injury in a player's career. >> it seems like some of these pools though it was very specifically about big injuries. if you were able to inflict an
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injury that got the person carted off, you get $1,000. if you got an injury that meant the person was not going to come back in the game, you got $1500. this seems to go a step farther. how prevalent do you think this version is, the one that does seem to be, you know, trying to really injure somebody and maybe even end their career? >> well, if it comes out factual, that's a very unfortunate thing. again, when i played the game we never played to that level of trying to physically injure or take a player out of the game. you wanted him to -- you wanted to impose your will on players. you wanted to play the game at the physical level, especially as defense. very physical sport, like hockey. i mean, you have to impose your will on players in order to succeed. in order to succeed and make it to the nfl this is something that's a culture of football and i think it's a great opportunity for the nfl to really take advantage and set the precedent to young players and young athletes across the nation to preach sportsmanship and safety
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of players. it is never been something that's been a part of us as players to physically injure a player to that caliber or carting a player off and so it's unfortunate to hear about this kind of situation. i guess the details remain to be seen and that will shed its light in the coming weeks. >> it does sound like some have said, yes, in fact they did do this, create a pool at this level. do you think it's strange to have a coach involved, that it's not just sort of the players throwing money in but a coach too? kind of takes it to a different level. >> it does. it does. again, i don't know just yet if it's factual. i don't think any of us do at this point, but it does if it's to that case and it's an unfortunate situation if that's the case. i'm sure the nfl will definitely do what's needed as far as setting fines and limitations to it. again, i think if that's the case and with so much media attention to it at this point, i think the nfl definitely needs to send a message, and i'm sure
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they will. but it's unfortunate. and i hope that greg williams, he's a class act. i hope that it's untrue at this point. i know players have always done it and it's no different than putting stickers on your helmet in high school, getting a pat on your back or getting accolades for a big hit. it falls along the same lines and it's a gray area. >> you're the executive vice president for the national collegiate scouting association. you are dealing with high school students who are hoping to become pro football players. what kind of conversations do you have with them? what's a good, clean hit with somebody in defense and how do you keep that from going overboard and injuring them so badly? how do you have that conversation with a high schooler? >> well, the game, players at this point in time, first off, bigger, faster, stronger athletes are. it's going to be unfortunate situations sometimes, but as far as aiming at a player's knees, hitting a player in the back of the head, ear hole, side of the
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head, those are always dangerous situations. again, football is a physical sport so what we try to teach at ncsa is leadership, sportsmanship, and being positive athletes and taking care of your fellow peers. so in terms of injury, i mean, you want to just teach sportsman ship and teach character, development, try to teach these players in the right form or fashion the same way i played the game. that's what you want to instill and continue to instill with so many players do in giving back to the youth and working with the youth. i'm sure the nfl, nfl players' association will be heavily involved with this as they are right now and making sure the right message is sent. and, you know, if it's the case where a coach is involved, it's an unfortunate situation but i'm sure it's something they will deal with as well. >> i bet you're right about that, izell reese played under williams. still ahead on "starting point," does the constitution protect home grown terrorists? why attorney general eric holder
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says sometimes it's legal and constitutional to target americans overseas. we'll discuss that straight ahead on "starting point." apane] yeah, do you have anything for a headache... like excedrin, ohhh, bayer aspirin... ohh, no no no. i'm not having a heart attack, it's my head. no, bayer advanced aspirin, this is made for pain. [ male announcer ] bayer advanced aspirin has microparticles, enters the bloodstream fast, and safely rushes extra strength relief to the sight of your tough pain. feel better? yeah...thanks for the tip! [ male announcer ] for fast powerful pain relief, use bayer advanced aspirin. but we couldn't simply repeat history. we had to create it. introducing the 2013 lexus gs, with leading-edge safety technology, like available blind spot monitor... [ tires screech ] ...night view... and heads-up display. [ engine revving ] the all-new 2013 lexus gs.
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♪ spread your wings and get higher, and higher, straight up to the clouds ♪ >> that's another good way to start the morning. that's off brett o'donnell's play list. van hale len, dreams. a woman who lost both of her legs. parts of both of her legs. she was able to save her two children during those deadly tornadoes in the midwest. we'll hear her story. she talks about how she risked her life to save her kids. dead heat in ohio.
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super tuesday, the state that has a knack for picking presidents. we'll talk to the attorney general of ohio who will be with us live straight ahead. israel's prime minister says the country cannot afford to wait much longer. will president obama buy any time. that's all straight ahead on "starting point." we're back in just a moment. no! but, i'm about to change that. ♪ every little baby wants 50% more cash... ♪ phhht! fine, you try. [ strings breaking, wood splintering ] ha ha. [ male announcer ] the capital one cash rewards card. the card for people who want 50% more cash. ♪ what's in your wallet? ♪ what's in your...your...
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♪ we've been talking about jackson ever since the fire went out ♪ ♪ i'm going to jackson ♪ i'm going to mess around that's johnny cash, jackson. that's off the ohio attorney general, mike dewine's play list. i like his play list. he's going to join us. you can see our entire play list every morning on our website cnn.com/starting point. headlines we begin with this morning, christine has those for us. good morning, again. good morning, soledad. attorney general eric holder
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defended the targeted killing of an american. holder referenced the fifth amendment of the constitution that says no one can be deprived of life without due process of the law. he says due process doesn't mean judicial process, especially when it comes to national security. >> the nature of how terrorists act and where they tend to hide, it may not always be feasible to capture a united states sit center or list who presents an imminent threat of violent attack. in that case our government has the clear authority to defend the united states with lethal force. >> american was killed in a targeted drone attack in yemen last year. police in houston hoping a $10,000 reward will help solve the murder miss stri. an iranian college student, activist was gunned down while she was driving home two months ago. the case has gained worldwide speculation that she was a target of a political attack. she was outspoken in promoting iranian women's rights and
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criticizing the eye rain yan government. take a look at this disorder in the court. in springfield, massachusetts. it turned into a free-for-all. two members of the alleged victims' family tried to get at the suspect, jose santiago. they were tackled by courtroom officers and wrestled to the ground. they face charges for assault and battery on court officers. the tornado torn town of branson, missouri, says its tornado warning system failed and no one got a warning before the storm hit. officials said the code red system was supposed to call residents with a storm warning but the company didn't turn it on. the program was put into place three years ago. it has warned residents about floods last spring. an incredible story coming out of those deadly storms. a mother who saved her kids by shielding them with her own body as the tornadoes hit her home. 36-year-old stephanie decker, she lost parts of both of her legs. this morning from her hospital bed she says she made a split
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second decision to tie up her children in a comforter and then throw herself on top of them in the basement of her indiana home. >> i was reaching around holding them and trying to keep everything away from them so it didn't hit them. i had two steel beams on my legs and i couldn't -- i couldn't move. i was stuck. they're screaming, mommy, i can't live without you. i don't want to die. please don't let me die. >> wow. that wreckage piled on to decker. broke seven of her ribs. it almost self verdict both of her legs. the father says their two children, five and eight, barely suffered a scratch. soledad, when it's storms like that, you really can only survive underground. it's amazing she was able to get out and to think of a way so quickly to try to save her kids. >> what a brilliant move to wrap them in a comforter and protect
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them with her body. that's incredible. >> god bless her. >> wow. all right, christine. thank you for the update. we're talking super tuesday this morning. first polls are open. ten states will be holding contests, of course. one of the very biggest prizes, the state of ohio, there are 63 delegates up for grabs. there's a brand new poll to show you. it shows that mitt romney and rick santorum are tied in that state, 32% each. j us a week ago it was rick santorum who had a major lead there. mike dewine is the ohio attorney general. he switched to rick santorum. we appreciate you talking to us this morning. when you look at how ohio is looking right now, what are you predicting for the outcome for tonight? >> well, it's going to be very, very close. what you really have in ohio in the last several weeks is tremendous energy behind rick santorum and a lot of money behind governor romney. it's the most massive amount of money that's ever been spent in ohio in a short time by one
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candidate. romney has spent about $12 million. it's about a 12: 1 ratio. it's absolutely phenomenal. almost all the ads have been negative. so the fact that rick santorum has been able to hang in there despite this barrage of negative ads is, frankly, telling you something about his support and his appeal to kind of the average person. what this race really boils down to is the establishment candidate, romney, in ohio versus the people's candidate. it's going right down to the wire. >> when you look at the polls though, you've seen in the state of ohio, really not only is romney putting a lot of money into that race, but in the polls rick santorum is losing ground. that's happened over the last couple of weeks. does that, do you think, correlate to his focus on social issues? >> no. >> am i wrong? >> no. it's money, money, money. no, it's money, money, money. there is no substitute for
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money, and romney has just dumped -- you know, $12 million, i don't know how to explain how big that is in ohio, but in a governor's race you might spent 20 over months and months and months. this is concentrated in two weeks. people cannot turn on their radio or tv without seeing romney's negative attacks. the fact that rick has been able to survive this and hang in there and has a real shot at winning this tonight i think speaks volumes, frankly, about the appeal of these two candidates. what i've seen with santorum is that he appeals to the average voter, the blue collar worker. it's going to make him very, very strong in the fall when he runs in ohio. romney, for whatever reason, has not -- cannot connect with the average voter. >> but he's doing better when it comes to catholics, right? he's doing better in polling in ohio. he's up six points among catholics. he's up five points among women. it may not be the average voter but probably a big, important chunk of ohio.
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>> with all due respect, i don't know why sometimes the media can't understand if you dump $12 million in negative ads, we all think that they don't work. they do work, and that's what's happening. but santorum is still in there. and he's got a great grassroots support. we have people out today working the polls, people making phone calls. tremendous energy behind rick santorum in this state, and it's going right down to the wire tonight. >> well, and i agree with you. no question that millions and millions of dollars poured in will have an impact. we've seen that in other states. there are certainly people who look back and have seen how the last couple of weeks have gone and not based on money but based on sort of the messaging from each candidate. and rick santorum really started losing some of his ground in polls when he started talking about some separation of church and state, contraception. you don't think that has anything to do with where he stands in the polls today in ohio? >> no, i really do not. it is all about money. look, rick has been talking
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about jobs in ohio. i've been with him for every speech he's given in ohio. every speech has been a new ansed speech. yes, he's talked about abortion. that should not come as a surprise with a pro-life candidate. he's also talked about manufacturing. he's talked about jobs. he has talked about what we have to do to get the entitlements under control. very nuanced speeches, every single one of them. so i think he does have that appeal and i think the significant thing is when you look to the fall, who can reach the average ohioan? who can reach those people we used to call trying began democrats? i don't know what we call them today, but we have to win a significant number of them in the fall. i think it's clear that rick has more appeal to those individuals than governor romney does. >> mike dewine is ohio's attorney general. thags for talking with us. we appreciate it. >> thank you. >> you bet. still ahead on "starting point,"
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how long will israel wait to go at it alone against iran? we're going to talk to prime minister netanyahu's former chief of staff. we're watching starting point. we have a short break and we're back after the break. [ todd ] hello? hello todd. just calling to let you know i'm giving you the silent treatment. so you're calling to tell me you're giving me the silent treatment? ummm, yeah. jen, this is like the eighth time you've called... no, it's fine, my family has free unlimited mobile-to-any-mobile minutes -- i can call all i want. i don't think you understand how the silent treatment works. hello? [ male announcer ] buy unlimited messaging and get free unlimited calling to any mobile phone on any network. at&t.
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couple of quick headlines to get to this morning. a last-minute change of the upcoming g 8 summit is moving from chicago could camp david. the white house says likely protests did not factor into the change. they say camp david is a better place for more intimate discussions and probably safer. it kicks off on may 20th. president clinton will help president obama on the campaign trail. they'll appear together in new york, los angeles, and chicago. that's good news for president obama because bill clinton's pliek ability rating is 61%. carol does stel low, good
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morning. >> good morning, soledad. coming up on this crucial super tuesday morning, three republican can are on the stump. they're talking iran, israel. we'll tell you if they're racheting up tensionness that part of the world. is there really a republican war on women? didn't rush limbaugh prove it? we'll ask former presidential candidate michele bachmann who has been a target of sexist comments herself. the great underwear controversy. navajo nation sues urban outfitters on women's briefs. as i said, indian nation is not happy. it is now suing the retailer. we'll expound on that and much more coming your way at 9:00 a.m. eastern. we'll see you then. thank you. still ahead on "starting point." the former chief of staff for prime minister netanyahu, we'll sit down and talk to hi. how far apart are the united states and israel on any kind of time line on a possible strike on iran. short break. the delicious, satisfying taste of gourmet gravy every day.
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welcome back, everybody. israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu will meet with members of congress today. of course, the conversation will be about iran. netanyahu had a similar discussion with president obama yesterday and then he topped off the evening by speaking at apac, listen. >> my friends, israel has waited, patiently waited for the international community to resolve this issue. we've waited for diplomacy to work. we've waited for sanctions to work. none of us can afford to wait much longer. >> the former chief of staff for prime minister netanyahu, naftali bennett joins us. we appreciate your time this morning. describe for me where you think the main points of difference are between the prime minister and president obama after their conversation of yesterday. >> i mean, i think the good news
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is that president obama made it patently clear that it's in america's national interest to prevent iran from going nuclear. that's the good news. the bad news is that amid these discussions words in washington don't stop centrifuges so chief inspector, amano reported just now that iran has tripled the pace of production of 20% enriched uranium, installed 2600 new centrifuges underground during the past few months, so the main problem is that the current sanctions are too slow and too soft to stop iran and that means that we're not going to be able to prevent the need for an attack. that's the main point of difference. >> the new word out today was that iran says they are going to allow nuclear inspectors for one time. do you think this changes -- this new word changes the conversation at all? >> i think iran's way of going -- their modus operandi is to maneuver. they invite you in.
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they show you 5% of it, slow you down. they just want to buy time while they're racing to acquire the bomb. they also know that they're transferring their facilities underground so in a relatively short time frame they'll be immune from an attack. that's the race. the race to become immune. >> senator john mccain talked about sort of red lines. i want to play for you what he told me yesterday and then we'll talk about where those red lines are in your mind after this. let's listen. >> i would like to see the president of the united states say, here's the following red lines. if the iranians cross those lines, then proper action will be taken. >> so what are the red lines and what does proper action mean in your mind? >> well, i want to emphasize, a, israel never in its history has asked america to fight for it. we're not doing that now. always in the history it was israel who did the job of the world. we did it in '81 when we took out iraq's nuclear reactor and we did it in 2007 allegedly when we took out syria's nuclear
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reactor. i'll just point out that had we not done it and assad's regime is about to fall, imagine if he had three or four bombs right now what he would do. a, we're not asking america to fight anyone else's war. we're willing to do what's necessary. what we do need, and there is one last chance to prevent the need for an attack, it's to immediately apply paralyzing sanctions on iran's regime to bring the regime to the brink of collapse. that just might prevent the need of an attack. >> spell them out for me. what are they? >> the first thing is to move up the time frame. the current central sanction is on iran's central bank. it's only to set to play in, if at all, in june. why do we need to wait until june? we need that now, yesterday, today. just do it. secondly, america has to present the plausible threat that the iranians will understand that america means business. i think to a great extent obam obama's made progress on that.
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it's carrying a big stick. the stick america is carrying is not big enough. >> here's what the president said at apec. let's lessen. >> my personal -- we will do what it takes to preserve israel's qualitative edge because israel must have the ability to defend itself, by itself against any threat. >> there are some that were unhappy with the president's words of support. >> yeah. >> do you feel like that's changed? you're feeling better about that. >> the words are powerful. the sanctions right now are not, and that's the main gap. what we need in order to retain security and quiet is immediate, paralyzing sanctions that will bring iran's regime to the brink of collapse. >> he's the former chief of staff for the prime minister of israel. thanks for talking to us. "end point" is up next with our panelists. we're back in just a moment.
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the lobster man and fishing boat captain couldn't read or write. >> i was so ashamed of myself that i never told anyone. >> growing up with a strict portuguese father, haen ri was put to work as a young child. his father didn't care about school so henry seldom went to class. >> i didn't learn a thing. i didn't know nothing, absolutely nothing. >> and yet his teachers kept promoting him to the next grade. henry eventually dropped out of school, kept working, got married and he used his street smarts to get by. his wife knew he couldn't read a word. friends and family had their suspicions but never asked. it wasn't until his wife became ill that he finally openly admitted he was illiterate. >> i says, i've got to do something. i says, i can't go on for all of my life this way. >> with the help of family and friends, henry began to teach himself. >> he went through the everybody tire dictionary from back to front reading. >> studies show as the human brain ages it becomes more difficult for a person to learn a new skill, especially at the
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age of 90. henry thought time might be running out so he hired a tutor to help him. two years later, he succeeded. henry decided to take it a step further. he had all these stories stuck inside his head with no way to pass them along so now armed with the written word, he put them in a book called "in a fish sherman's language." it's a reflection of his life. he published it at the age of 96. it's become very popular, especially among people with learning disabilities. >> i always thought that he would draw on something of his life. i never realized that this would happen, that this book would be so popular. >> today henry shakes his head when someone calls him an author. it's hard for him to process the last few years, but he says it's been a journey like no other. >> i don't know how i survived, but here i am. >> dr. sanjay gupta, cnn reporting. so who ordered the cereal that can help lower cholesterol
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stereo, go where you move ♪ we're playing train, hey, soul sister. you're looking at a picture of central perfect. perfect ending for a perfect day. what's your end point for this morning, sir? >> if we don't act within a few months, we might wake up to an iranian bomb that will threaten paris, rome, madrid. that will be a nuclear nightmare. the challenge of president obama and prime minister netanyahu is to prevent a second holocaust. all right. let's move on to faraid? what's your "end point"? >> looking at super tuesday, i am hoping that the conversation, whatever happens with the race, turns away from the social issues in which women i think have been punished in the debate rather than political points won. >> mr. moore? >> i think the most important statistic to pay attention to tonight in the super tuesday is voter turnout. >> yes. >> republicans have had a big, big problem. >> down 9%.
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>> the excitement deficit. it will be really interesting to see in virginia, ohio, two battleground purple states in november. >> finally, mr. brett o'donnell? >> four years ago super tuesday -- >> four years, he's going back four years. that's an ominous start to my 30 seconds that you get. >> four years ago super tuesday ended mitt romney's candidacy. tonight super tuesday could cement his candidacy. but we'll see if he meets the benchmark. >> dot the eyi in ohio. cnn's super tuesday coverage will begin tonight at 6:00 p.m. eastern. special edition of "john king u.s.a." followed by the primary results coverage which starts at 7:00 p.m. tomorrow "early start" will begin at 4:00 a.m. with all the super tuesday results plus we'll be joined by newark mayor, cory booker. he'll join the "starting point" panel. first it gets you right to carol costello with "cnn newsroom." good morning to you. good morning to you.

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